Belgium in military talks with Congo
10 May 2006, BRUSSELS — Belgian Defence Minister André Flahaut has arrived in the Democratic Republic of Congo to discuss military co-operation with the nation's former colony.
10 May 2006
BRUSSELS — Belgian Defence Minister André Flahaut has arrived in the Democratic Republic of Congo to discuss military co-operation with the nation's former colony.
Flahaut arrived on Tuesday night and will spend three days in the Central African nation, news service VRT reported.
The minister's first task was a visit to a military academy in the town of Likasi in the south-eastern region of the country. A visit to a second military academy was planned for Wednesday.
Belgium has helped train three of the Congo's new army brigades. It has also supplied military material. These brigades incorporate soldiers from the various factions involved in the 1998-2003 civil war.
Flahaut will meet Congolese President Kabila and Vice President and defence chief Azarias Ruberwa on Thursday.
The Belgian embassy in Kinshasa said the aim of the visit is to examine progress in military reform with an eye to the nation's forthcoming elections.
Just 6 out of 18 new army brigades have been deployed and soldiers complain of irregular wage payments.
[Copyright Expatica News 2006]
Subject: Belgian news